The Moss Review report into the capability and culture of the live export regulator is a damning critique of Barnaby Joyce’s reckless administration of the regulation of the live export trade.
It highlights the significant adverse impact of Joyce’s decisions to abolish the Australian Animal Welfare Strategy and the Animal Welfare Unit within the Department of Agriculture.
Labor welcomes the Government’s decision to backflip and accept the recommendation to resurrect the position of Inspector General of Live Exports.
Labor created the Inspector General position in 2013 but Joyce dropped the Statutory Officer following the 2013 election.
Joyce took a wrecking ball approach to the regulatory process and shocking events like the Awassi Express incident were to be expected.
Labor will take time to analyse the report and to fully consider the 31 recommendations, however, it must be noted that the report covers the performance of the regulator only.
The Prime Minister must also acknowledge that the former Agriculture Minister, Barnaby Joyce was allowed to make decisions not in the interest of the regulator or the agriculture department, but to create a culture of turning a blind eye to animal welfare matters. That this was a systematic problem allowed to perpetuate whether it was the Abbott, Turnbull or Morrison Governments.
Based on the evidence in the Moss Review Report the Prime Minister must take the time to consider other decisions Barnaby Joyce was allowed to make during his time as Agriculture Minister, particularly with regards to Drought reform and the forced relocation of the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority.